Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme

A UN-HABITAT programme in cooperation with the European Commission and the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Secretariat. Read more

About PSUP

Launched in 2008, the Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme (PSUP) aims to improve the living conditions in towns and cities and positively contribute to Millennium Development Goal 7, Target 11, which is to improve the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers by the year 2020. Currently there are 34 countries and 63 cities among the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP) states participating in the programme.


The programme’s purpose is to strengthen the capacity of local, central, and regional institutions and key stakeholders in settlement and slum improvement through the use of good governance and management approaches and pilot projects. It also contributes, where needed, to developing policies and carrying out institutional, legislative, financial, normative, and implementation frameworks.


To meet these challenges, the programme seeks to work with local and national stakeholders on key slum-upgrading projects through initiating the creation of a network for addressing regional slum-upgrading challenges. For this purpose, regional training and policy seminars on the programme’s concept, themes, and methods will be organized with all the involved stakeholders. The programme also aims to support local and national authorities in identifying adequate funding to carry out specific activities.


The Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme is being implemented through a tripartite partnership among the European Commission, the ACP Group of States, and UN-HABITAT.


The Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme has adopted a three-phased approach.


Phase 1: Urban profiling

During the first phase, cities conduct rapid, participatory, cross-cutting, multi-sectoral, and action-oriented assessments of needs, with the aim of identifying challenges and response mechanisms. Some of the methods applied during the profiling include desk reviews, interviews with key actors, and countrywide consultations. The main themes analysed are urban governance, urban safety, shelter, land, gender, local economic development, basic urban services, disaster management, climate change, and the environment.

Phase 2: Action planning and programme document formulation

During the second phase, which builds on the results of the urban profiling, cities prioritize interventions at the neighbourhood level and analyse planning and development frameworks for slum upgrading and prevention. In addition, networks for slum-upgrading work are established, capacity-building activities implemented, and authorities supported to identify funding sources.


Phase 3: Project implementation

During the third phase, municipal authorities, regional authorities, and central governments are supported to implement some of the tangible projects identified.